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Press Release

Former Corrections Officer Pleads Guilty to Smuggling Marijuana and Alcohol into Cook County Jail

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Illinois

CHICAGO — A former Cook County Corrections Officer admitted in federal court today that he smuggled marijuana, tobacco and alcohol into the Cook County Jail.

JASON MAREK delivered the contraband to a jail inmate after tucking it into sandwiches and sneaking it past security, according to a written plea agreement.  In exchange for his efforts, Marek received cash payments from the inmate’s wife, the plea agreement states.

Marek, 30, pleaded guilty to one count of federal program bribery.  The conviction carries a maximum sentence of ten years in prison.  U.S. District Judge Charles R. Norgle will schedule a sentencing hearing at a later date.

Marek was assigned to a maximum-security tier of the jail when he smuggled in the goods in May and June 2013.  After initially selling used chewing tobacco to the inmate for $200, Marek and the inmate agreed to deal the marijuana and alcohol, according to the plea agreement.  The inmate arranged for his wife to meet Marek at a location outside of the jail in order for Marek to receive payment for his services, the plea agreement states. 

Marek admitted knowing that the inmate planned to sell the contraband to other inmates within the jail, according to the plea agreement.

The guilty plea was announced by Zachary T. Fardon, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Cook County Sheriff Thomas J. Dart; and Michael J. Anderson, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Megan Cunniff Church and Michelle Nasser.

Plea Agreement

Updated December 4, 2015

Drug Trafficking